The New York Historical Fencing Association is a school of Historical European Martial Arts (HEMA). Our studies are based on the teachings of the 14th century German fencing master Johannes Liechtenauer. Although we focus primarily on the longsword, our curriculum includes wrestling, dagger, sword and buckler, spear and poleaxe. NYHFA is a member of the HEMA Alliance.

New Location!

NYHFA Longsword Curriculum is now being offered in Manhattan, through Sword Class NYC, taught by NYHFA Instructor Tristan Zukowski. Please visit for all information pertaining to class schedule, class fees, etc.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Why we do what we do...

I was watching the vid I posted of our recent promotion test and I asked myself, "Why do we put so much time and effort into something that's so utterly useless in modern society?"

Then I thought about it. Is art useless? Is history useless? Is tradition useless? Is beauty useless? Is love? Objectively, there are many things in our lives that have little or no practical purpose. There are many things we learn in school (philosophy, science, art, history) that are useless in most people's lives. Yet if you think about it, these are the things that enrich us, these are the things that give us purpose, that make life worth living.

We, you and I, are immensely privileged. We get to restore something that was lost, recreate something beautiful, something important, something that is a part of our collective cultural heritage, a part of who and what we were, and therefore, who we are today. If you think about it, this is a tremendous honor, because it is such important work. Archaeologists and historians are building medieval castles and villages so people can see what life was like. History professors research the past, reconstructing events, economies and cultures. What we are doing is the same, except that we focus on something more profound, something that defined not only how these people fought and died, but what was in their hearts.

Just think about it for a moment. We belong to a select few, a community of men and women who have pledged their time, their sweat and their blood to recreating a vastly complex system of combat that spanned three centuries and an entire continent. Ain’t that just freakin’ awesome?

Sunday, June 27, 2010

6/26/10 Promotion Test Results

Novice Test
Fabio - passed.
Steve - passed.

Senior Novice Test

Tristan - passed.

Vlad - provisional pass.*

Jonathan - provisinal pass.*

* A provisional pass means you did very well overall, but there were a few areas of the test that you messed up on. Because of how well you did, I don't want to fail you, so instead you will make up those portions in September.

Thank you to everyone who came to support and help us. Fencing with your guys was a privilege.